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Copyright © League of Women Voters of Evanston
Serving the people of Evanston & Skokie, Illinois, since 1922.
At the May 23, 2019 LWVE Annual Meeting, members in attendance approved the following proposed local program for the 2019-2020 League year.
The League of Women Voters of Evanston will take appropriate action or collaborate with and support like-minded organizations and coalitions in Evanston and other northern suburban communities, to advocate for issues consistent with League positions. The four main focus areas are listed.
1. LWVE will back state and national League of Women Voters climate action priorities and will support the City of Evanston in implementing its Climate Action and Resilience Plan.
New, continuing Climate Corner column introduced to Intercom
Supported ETHS students in Student Climate Strike on Sept 20; publicized event to membership;arranged for voter registration during strike
Luncheon Meeting on the Climate Action and Resilience Plan (CARP) after one year with speakerKumar Jensen, Chief Sustainability and Resilience Officer at City of Evanston
LWVE advocacy letters of support for: ▪ LWVUS climate emergency goal for upcoming Program Plan ▪ Evanston Environment Board’s initiative to secure written support for embedding into Evanston staff hiring process (including new City Manager) requirements that CARP priorities be written into staff goal and objectives and be part of annual evaluation.
Participated in CARP Coordinators Group to explore opportunities for LWVE to collaborate withother climate emergency-concerned groups
2. Continue analysis of current Boards, Committees and Commissions to develop a model that best balances important missions for BCC’s with efficient use of city and citizen personnel.
The Local Government group continued to monitor this issue, but City Staff and City Councildiscontinued their announced efforts to restructure, so no further work was needed.
3. Use the 100th anniversary of women suffrage, the founding of the League of Women Voters, and the election of 2020 as outreach focal points to engage our membership and recruit new members.
LWVE was an active participant in the working group planning and publicizing events to commemoratepast achievements in political rights for women and call attention to continuing factors compromisingvoting rights. LWVE worked with other groups to sponsor an extensive set of activities, culminating in a Voting Rights Symposium and Suffrage Rally in Fountain Square in August. Due to COVID-19 many ofthese activities had to be cancelled.
4. Investigate reasons for low voter turn-out, especially among young people (18-30) in local elections.Based on the results, develop and implement a plan to increase voter turn-out. To the extentpossible, use measurable goals and evaluate outcomes of the plan.
A review of the literature was conducted to determine best practices to increase the youth vote. Focus group discussions with young people were held in order to help meet this goal. Contacts at community and educational organizations helped identify potential participants.
The following recommendations were made by the committee based on the focus groups and literature review:
➢ Actively work to support the schools’ civics programs and explore ways that we can activelyparticipate in the portion of the curriculum relating to local government. Provide input andsupport in the development of the middle school civics curriculum.
▪ Integrate community engagement in civics curriculum.
▪ Increase education on the local level of government in the curriculum.
➢ Continue to support activities that increase voter participation, including but not limited tothe following:
▪ Create a series of fact sheets or Frequently Asked Questions/FAQs to provide moreinformation on the registration and voting process and include links to reliableinformational sources.
▪ Revive active collaboration with other organizations to register voters and increasevoter turnout through the Voter Participation and Action Coalition/VPAC.
▪ Expand voter registration opportunities at events and venues that have the potential toincrease voter turnout among all ages and with a greater focus on information aboutlocal government and issues.
▪ Advocate for expanded preregistration and easy access to polling stations, including on-campus voting at college campuses.
▪ Advocate against legislation and other measures that suppress the vote.